Northrop Grumman has achieved another major milestone in developing equipment to defend helicopters against man-portable air defense systems and other heat-seeking munitions.
With the completion of the Common Infrared Countermeasure Preliminary Design Review July 25, Northrop Grumman presented the U.S. Army with a system design that surpasses the program’s weight and electrical power requirements and represents the next generation of aircraft survivability systems.
The PDR marked the final design review of the program’s technology development phase, providing the Army with the necessary data to move into the engineering and manufacturing development phase. Northrop Grumman completed the PDR on schedule based on requirements established at contract award.
“What we presented during the review was exactly what we promised in our proposal to the Army 26 months ago: detailed performance data from mature CIRCM systems demonstrating a system that protects aircrews at an affordable cost,” said Jeff Palombo, vice president and general manager of Northrop Grumman’s Land and Self Protection Systems Division. “Our PDR date was established 14 months ago, and with close collaboration with the Army, we executed on time with anticipated results. With our CIRCM system testing moving out smartly, we are well prepared to support our Army customer with compliant EMD hardware and rapid production capability.”
CIRCM is a lightweight, low-cost, highly reliable, laser-based countermeasure system designed to work with missile warning systems for rotary wing, tilt-rotor and small fixed-wing aircraft across the military services. Northrop Grumman is developing its solution with partners SELEX ES and Daylight Solutions. The company was awarded a technology development contract to develop the system in 2012. It completed acceptance testing on the first suite of equipment and delivered a complete hardware set in January – two months ahead of schedule.
Northrop Grumman is an industry leader in directional infrared countermeasures system design and manufacture. The company’s infrared countermeasures systems have been installed on more than 800 aircraft representing 50 different aircraft types, including large and small fixed-wing, rotary-wing and tilt-wing platforms.